Today, I spent 5 hours walking through the 300 acre Merrimac Farm Wildlife Management Area checking its 15 bluebird boxes on a gorgeous spring day. During breeding season, the boxes are checked once a week, and it was my turn. The boxes are spread out across the farm, and it normally takes half that amount of time to open each box and inspect its contents, and based on its contents, take the appropriate action such as count any eggs and young bluebirds before they fledge. However, it took me twice as long because I had to stop (often) to photograph the spring flowers that were growing everywhere.
What was also extremely nice today was having the entire farm to myself. While walking the 300 acres, I never saw another human–only nature in all its spectacular beauty.
Before I get to the flowers, the following is what I found when I inspected the bluebird boxes today:
- Two boxes that had young bluebirds last time they were checked and were now empty. So, I removed the old nests.
- Two boxes contained young bluebirds. (Pictures taken with my iPhone follow.)
- The other boxes were empty.
As mentioned above, as I walked through the farm, there were spring flowers blooming almost everywhere I looked. The dull brown and gray colors of winter were now completely gone or covered/replaced by shades of green and colorful wild flowers. I predominately shot the flowers with my Nikon 105mm macro lens to get in close and capture as much detail as possible. Some of what I shot follows and more images are located at: http://stabone.com/p175603169
(Nikon D700, Nikon 105mm at f16, 1/40, ISO 200)
(Nikon D700, Nikon 105mm at f16, 1/60, ISO 200)
(Nikon D700, Nikon 105mm at f9, 1/1,600, ISO 200)
(Nikon D700, Nikon 105mm at f11, 1/320, ISO 200)
The flower above is very different and looks like it belongs on another planet.
Tomorrow or over the (rainy) weekend, I plan to complete processing the many remaining waterfall images that I took last weekend at Ricketts Glen and then upload them to my Website. I needed a break from the waterfalls. Is possible for waterfalls to become monotonous? Never, I just needed some more fresh spring air.
The flowers are wonderful. Do you know their names? Especially the odd one. The baby bluebirds looked more blue on your website. Sounds like a truly wonderful day, and I am jealous!
It was a wonderful day–I am enjoying part time employment. Unfortunately, I do not know the names of the flowers and was hoping that if any viewers do, they will provide them in the comments.
The top one is an Iris and the bottom one is Red Columbine. Not sure about the middle 2.
Thank you Greg. I will update accordingly.